Google Sued For Overcharging Millions Of Users
Google is being sued in London over claims it overcharged close to 20 million UK users, after a similar case was filed in America last month.
Both claims involve Google’s 30 per cent surcharge for app store purchases, which the London claimants call “excessive and unfair”, and a breach of competition laws “at the expense of millions of loyal customers in the UK.”
The same legal team filed a similar suit against Apple in May. Both companies are currently facing a UK antitrust probe.
“Google created the Android app marketplace, and controls it with a vice-like grip,” said Liz Coll, former Head of Digital at Consumers International who is leading the class-action. “Customers are herded towards the Google Play Store, and once there have no option but to pay a 30 per cent fee whenever they buy an app or make an in-app purchase.”
A Google spokesperson said the lawsuit misses several key points, including that 97 per cent of developers aren’t charged a service fee, making their apps free for users. The company claims less than 0.1 per cent of developers are charged the full 30 per cent fee, and only when they earn over $1 million.
“We compete vigorously and fairly for developers and consumers,” Google concluded.